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Starting a business can be difficult but success can bring wealth and a more rewarding career than sticking with the day job and looking for promotion from an employer. If you have a business idea putting it into action may require new skills (to help you build the business or improve upon exisiting skills and customer service provided), finance (bank loan, funding, business investors) employing other businesses ans their services (website design, outsourcing logistics, setting up your business premises, etc.). You may want to work from home to save money or have a dedicated business premises but you will need to promote and improve-upon your business brand from day 1 and each and every day to offer a reliable, high-quality choice for your potential customers or clients. Brand promotion and recognition will not only attract customers but also improve retention rates and encourage repeat custom.

Financing a new Business Idea

Bank loans, personal savings or getting funding from business investors make up the majority of sources of finance for starting a business. Starting a new business may require stock, employees, office equipment, plant and machinery, new business premisies (buy or rent), advertising budget and more.

If you go down the route of arrranging a bank loan you will need to prepare forecasted profit and loss account and projecting cash flow for the business. Once the bank understands your projections and decides to offer you the money you will need to focus on making the business a success to pay back the borrowed money in the form of a business loan. Many businesses have ongoing loans outstanding to manage cash flow to enable your business to keep trading over time.

Personal savings can be used to invest in business ideas. You could even remortgage your home. However you arrange the money for funding your new business venture you should also look at potential failure of the business because if you use too much of your own money and the business is not a success you may not be able to pay bills, face bankruptcy or bailiffs may call to take away business money and/or business assets.

Seeking Business investors to invest in your business idea is a good way to raise funding. However, when your business is a success the investor(s) will own a share of your business and also have ownership rights meaning profit is shared with the business investors and they may also have rights in terms of business control (particularly if they own over 50 percent of your business). Therefore you need to think about the long-term success of the business and not just the beginning of the business. Thing about the most successful outcome and then consider what percentage of the business you are prepared to offer in return for how much money from the investor. You can then pitch your idea to the business investor and provide them with your future projections for the business profitability so that they understand not only what they are investing in today but also the potential profit and ownership and controllling rights they will have if they business meets its targets. You may also want to consider if targets are exceeded and talk with a solicitor about writing in to the contract between you and your business investors which can limit or reduce the investors percentage ownership if targets are met or exceeded which is commonplace in many business contracts (many investors are happy to reduce the profits they take if the business is a great success because if your business meets or exceeds expectations they will be rewared with more profit(s) plus an investor will see this as an incentive for you to meet targets or beat profit expectations..

Local or Worldwide customers?

Many businesses have customers from different places around the world. Planning and understanding where your customers potentially are based will help with setting up a new business. For example, if your business has a website and your product or service is appealing to a worldwide audience you should definitely have a .com domain name. If you are based in a particular country have a local country domain name will likely limit your audience and potential customers.

In terms of advertising, you may advertise in magazines with a country marketing opportunity whereas if you use the internet (such as Google Ads, or Facebook ads) your business can be advertised to a worldwide audience.

Exchange rates will affect profit if you sell products and services outside of your registered business country. You can open an international bank account but exchange rates will affect the profitability and success and your competitive edge when dealing in a foreign country. There are steps you can take to mitigate your businesses exposure to changes in exchange rates such as using a 'forward contract' or you could simply exchange currency as and when you are happy with the current exchange rate. As exchange rates change many businesses can face big challenges or face big financial problems so it is worth thinking about 'worst case scenarios' to ensure you understand your businesses potential problems. Trading between some countries is encouraged or favourable due to exchange rates and if you find new foreign suppliers or foreign customers you will find your business is more successful.

Having mulitple offices your country or abroad may be a good idea. Whether you have customers from your home or foreign country you may want to have numerous offices. Local business ideas may be able to be replicated in different locations in the same country. Alternatively, having an office or multiple offices in a foreign country may have advantages too. For example if you are close to your suppliers (foreign or domestic) you can arrange your logistic network to save costs. Labour is often cheaper abroad so if you provide a service (rather than a product due as services do not need sending through the post) you may like to have telephone operatives in a foreign location to save money.

You should consider your budget and capabilities before targetting a worldwide audience. You may find that if you work locally to establish your business attracting international customers will become easier as your develop your business. Many businesses start small (locally) before launching globally.

Branding and Professional Staff

To make your business a success you will need professional staff and good product or service branding. The more professional your business appears (branding) and the more accurately you provide the correct product or service (professional staff) the more successful your business will be. Training staff and evaluating and appraising your staff can be crucial to ensure they know the company ethos and service-levels expected from them and appraisals can help you determine how profitable your staff are and help you understand whether your business needs more or less workers across the company or in departments (finance, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) specialists, website designers and more.)

Outsourcing for businesses

Outsourcing can help your business. By focusing on what you are good at if you outsource parts of business you can gain competitive edge over competitors in your industry. For example if you outsource the website design, marketing and SEO you may be able to achieve more than if you were to keep these services within your company. An alternative to outsourcing is to employ staff to do the required work. For example, if you employ a person or team to design and manage the company website you will have more control over the changeability of the website compared with completely outsourcing website design.